Archive for the ‘KineRaw S35’ Category

Kinefinity’s KineRaw S35

Thursday, August 9th, 2012

Last night the thought came, if only I could justify getting a Sony F3…

Now possibly the answer to my dreams?  The forthcoming (next year, hopefully) KineRaw S35, by some people’s judgements, is broadly comparable to an Arri or RED but at half the price.  That’s broadly not exactly.  Yes, it’s from China..   I heard about it first from the highly informative NoFilmSchool (well worth joining).

This camera, nearing the end of its development and testing, shoots Raw (straight colours, no debayering), which to naive me sounds like big bandwidths and files, but as it happens, one of its options is to record to GoPro-Cineform RAW (10-bit log90) format.  This, if I read the article by Jake Seagraves (as of 9 August 2012) correctly, for a 2K frame, has typically the same bandwidth as GoPro-Cineform HDV (1440×1080), namely/numerically around 15 MB/sec (=120Mb/s).  I say typically because it is a Variable Bit Rate format, so obviously it depends on scene (including noise) complexity.   By comparison, HDV 1440×1080 m2t (long-GOP Mpeg2), like DV, are about 25Mb/s.  So Cineform is then about 5 times bigger than HDV and DV – the unavoidable cost of being “visually lossless”.

Some informative links I chanced upon:

  • Brief specs:
  • Main Site (still being edited at time of writing):
    • “…the Vimeo version is a shadow of the image quality the uncompressed footage can show since to post on Vimeo I need to compress MPEG4v2 and that mucks up the image with block artifacts…”
    • Yes I can pull the shadows up maybe 3 to 4 stops without major issues and perhaps 6 stops if you apply more forcefull noise reduction in post. The maximum would be about 8 stops of lift but probably not for Blu-ray use as compressed end use formats need noiseless result frames.
    • Some cameras use temporial noise reduction in the camera to get lower noise at high ISO, but these are raw recording cameras so you would use temporal noise reduction as well as area filters and chroma cleaners as a normal part of post production, so take that into account.
    •  35mm film scans are now ‘always’ de-grained and dust-busted with powerful software to get a usable result, most people don’t know how much grain ‘raw’ film scans can show because all they see are heavily digitally processed film scans. Likewise a True RAW recording Digital Cinema Camera gives you ‘raw’ DNG that are like raw film scans in that they should undergo de-grain and filtering to make the results look better, …
    • Cineform ™ is like RED ™’s REDCODE ™ in that it is wavelet compression
      • Sensor: the 2K model has a 4K sensor, downscaled by pixel-binning (hence all pixels get used).  Moire/Detail tradeoff optimizable by customizable Low-Pass-Filter (LPF).  CMOS hence rolling-shutter.
      • Exposure: Around 12 stops of latitude.  Base ISO is around 800, variable from 8 to 10,000 (above which noise becomes a problem).
      • Hardware: Has a fan, its speed/noise depending on temperature.  No battery of its own, just a (standard) power socket.
      • Audio: Two XLRs but they are only line-level (no mic, let alone phantom…)
      • Video: Two SDIs BUT these are only intended for monitoring, e.g. they only carry 8 bits.
      • Weight is around 4 kG.  Not as light as an F3 but not as heavy as an Arri.
      • Recording: Own-brand KineMag SSDs are only needed for “True Raw” DNG recording (800 MB/s), alternatives can be used for Cineform RAW recording (around 100Mb/s VBR).
      • Monitor outputs e.g. to feed SmallHD monitor (or others), include overlays for Waveform Monitor, Histogram (with separate colours), Zoom (e.g. for focus assist) up to 800%